This year, the Mobile World Congress received 100,000 attendees, just about the same as last year. As usual, Lateral View was present interacting with industry leaders and finding out which are the latest tech news.
If we had to summarize the congress in only three words or concepts, these would be: 5G, Artificial Intelligence and Digital Transformation. As for the devices, it always ends up being repetitive and not as innovative as they promise. Apple won the 2017 Best Smartphone Award and the Disruptive Device Innovation Award, which is curious since Apple does not even participate on this event.
The other big winner of the #MWC18 was Huawei which received several GLOMO awards. It was undoubtedly one of the companies with more presence in the whole Congress with a huge stand and devices displayed all over the place.
We saw many interesting things. The new Samsung S9 is pretty similar to all the other Samsung mobiles. It includes AR Emojis which intend to compete with Apple’s new emojis and it has the first smartphone camera with aperture.
Another interesting smartphone was the ZTE with double screen. The secondary screen is placed on the back of the device but it folds to create a larger screen. The concept is attractive though the dividing line in the middle is quite annoying.
Nokia is the company that presented the star device: Nokia 8 Sirocco. Pretty bold and risky as it aims to compete with high range devices. What I, personally, liked the most was the Nokia 8110. An absolutely great phone. It comes with a sliding lid and 4G. No Android, no iOS and no weird apps.
Also, I saw at least 10 Android phones with Notch. They come in every size. The copy machine is always ready for the MWC.
Several companies presented augmented reality devices aimed at different utilities from entertainment to more professional solutions.
There where many self-driving cars as well such as this white Smart which is autonomous and for two persons.
Headlines will always highlight just the outstanding devices but I believe it’s important to note that there is a great number of companies developing solutions related with Artificial Intelligence. Many of these are just theoretical for now but as years or maybe just months go by they will definitely become real. The great progress on neural networks and machine-learning technologies make me believe that (as cliché as it sounds) everything is possible.
The 5G is real. Many manufacturers, including Qualcomm, already have a concrete roadmap for their modems and other products. Companies are already starting to promote themselves and develop strategies around 5G.
The World Mobile Congress has been 4 very entertaining days revolving around technology and Barcelona is positioned once again as a disruptive city that is a hub for digital transformation. And, as if this were not enough, we had a beautiful snowfall on Tuesday!